Researchers gave shoulder pain sufferers either one shot of steroids or six PT sessions over three weeks and then monitored their progress throughout the next year. The two treatments worked equally well. On average, both groups saw 50 percent improvement in their pain levels and shoulder functionality. However, almost 40 percent of the injection group required additional shots to ease their pain, and 19 percent wound up needing physical therapy anyway. All of this, plus the fact that there are health risks involved with injections, leads the researchers to side with physical therapy.